Sources: Obama cramming on intel reports

CHICAGO, Dec. 16 (UPI) -- U.S. President-elect Barack Obama has been boning up on intelligence matters in recent days, holding long sessions with his foreign policy team, sources say.

Typical of his focus on international hot spots was a five-hour Monday meeting in Chicago with National Security Adviser-designate Gen. James Jones, Director of National Intelligence-designate Mike McConnell, U.S. Defense Secretary Robert Gates and others to discuss problem areas, The New York Times reported.


"(Obama) has been voracious" in seeking out intelligence information on the world's hot spots, engaging in several long meetings both in person and over the telephone with Jones, an unnamed senior adviser told the newspaper.

In recent days, Obama reportedly has studied foreign policy conundrums from around the world, from obscure independence movements in the Western Sahara to whether a planned increase of 20,000 troops in Afghanistan will work.

An unnamed official familiar with a meeting between Obama and Adm. Mike Mullen, the chairman of the Joint Chiefs of Staff, told the Times: "It struck the chairman very much that the president-elect is working very hard to bring himself up to speed, that he's willing to listen, and to learn as he moves his way through the education process."


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